How to work Bouclé Stitch

Bouclé Stitch Sample1Bouclé Stitch is a stitch that can be worked on any grid. It is a normally used as a canvas work stitch (also known as needlepoint) but it also can be worked on any fabric that is an even weave. So you can use it on foundation fabrics such as Aida and linen apart from working it traditionally on mono or interlock canvas.

Bouclé stitch is a textured stitch worked within a square.I discovered it in an old book on Canvas stitches by Mary Rhodes titled Dictionary of Canvas Work Stitches.

The trick to this stitch is to match the yarn carefully to the size of the stitch you want to work. Too thick and the texture is so tight you cant see too much effect and too thin and Bouclé Stitch sits flat on the fabric not doing much at all. If you have an interesting thick thread work larger stitches to show off the thread to its best advantage. Also there is no reason why the loops could be one thread and the bars another.

A final tip is on the second pass work the loops quite loose as then the texture of the stitch fills out producing an interesting surface that looks a little like Bouclé.

How to work Bouclé stitch

Bouclé stitch stitch can be worked in a square over any number of threads.

Bouclé Stitch Step 1Work a line of even diagonal stitches with the top each stitch angled toward the right. Have each stitch firm against the fabric, but not too tight as when you create the loops on the second pass these stitches need to be able to pull to one side a little.

Bouclé Stitch Step 2Bring your thread from the back at the top left hand corner of the stitch. To make the first loop take your needle over the top of the bar and pass it under the bar. As you pass under the bar make sure your needle points towards the top left hand corner as illustrated.

Bouclé Stitch Step 3To complete the loop insert the needle back into the fabric at the top left hand corner of the stitch. In the same action bring your needle out at the top right corner of the stitch, as illustrated.

Bouclé Stitch Step 4Work along the line adding a loop to each diagonal stitch.

Bouclé Stitch Step 5For the second part of the stitch. Take your thread back to the start of the row and work a second row of diagonal stitches inserting and exiting your needle at the same hole of the fabric as the first row of diagonal stitches.

Bouclé Stitch Step 6Don’t tension these too tight as the next row of loops will pull them slightly.

Bouclé Stitch Step 7Work a row of loops on each of the diagonal threads using the same method as you did the top line.

Bouclé Stitch Step 8This sample is worked in cotton perle #5 so you can see the structure of the stitch. Worked on a finer fabric Bouclé stitch produces a braid like line or a textured fill.

Bouclé Stitch Sample 2I hope you enjoy exploring Bouclé Stitch!

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8 Responses to How to work Bouclé Stitch

  1. Luise says:

    Thank you, Sharon, this is right the stitch I’m looking for my little project, it fits perfect! 🙂

  2. Odette from France says:

    I LOVE this stitch! I used it on one row to make a frame, I like the way it turned out.
    Thank you!

  3. Michelle RUELLE says:

    The photographs and explanations are clear (even if the translation into French is a bit complicated) – One more point in my reserve – Always faithful

  4. Evelyn Foster says:

    Thanks Sharon, I’ve added this one to my sampler for ‘creative’ day on Saturday.

  5. Jude Ebsworth says:

    Amazing stitch! I find your instructions are very easy to follow Sharon and don’t need a video

  6. Eileen says:

    Beautiful stitching example, thank you!

  7. J. Steele says:

    It would be nice to have a video of some of these stitches.

    • sharonb says:

      Yes videos would be nice but I am sorry one person runs this site and I only have so much time in the day. Also these tutorials are free.

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